Invisalign and TMJ: The Connection and Treatment Options
Temporomandibular joint disorder, or TMJ, is a condition that affects the muscles and joints in the jaw. The condition causes a lot of pain and discomfort, making it challenging for the person to speak, sleep and eat normally. Some possible causes of this jaw condition include arthritis, jaw injury, stress, or teeth grinding. Unfortunately, the disorder can negatively affect a person’s daily life, making it challenging for them to perform regular actions like speaking, smiling, or eating. There has been a link between Invisalign aligners and TMJ. We’re going to provide a connection between the two and explain why you should look for a dentist who installs Invisalign near you. Keep on reading to learn more.
What is Invisalign
Invisalign is a common way of straightening crooked or misaligned teeth using clear removable aligners. Unlike traditional braces, Invisalign aligners are more comfortable, meaning you can comfortably wear them for long periods.
So, when you go for Invisalign in Chaska, MN, the dentist will customize a set of these clear aligners to suit your needs. Here are some of the benefits of opting for Invisalign aligners:
- They cause less discomfort thanks to the material used to make them.
- They are removable, enabling you to eat whatever you want and clean them afterward.
- They are a discreet method of treating misaligned teeth.
Understanding TMJ Disorders
The skull and jawbone are linked by a sliding hinge known as the temporomandibular joint. Each side of your jaw has its joint. Therefore, when you experience pain in the jaw joint, muscles that move the jaw, and pain in the facial muscles, this is referred to as a temporomandibular disorder.
Knowing what causes this disorder is challenging as things like genetics, jaw injury, and arthritis play a significant role in causing the condition.
People who suffer from TMJ disorder usually opt for painkillers, non-surgical treatment, and muscle relaxants to cope with the pain and discomfort linked with the disorder. If these options fail to work, the dentist near you may suggest surgery to treat the disorder.
What Are the Symptoms of TMJ Disorders?
The symptoms that people experience with the disorder vary from person to person. However, most patients complain about the following symptoms:
- Popping sounds: during mouth opening and closing, a pop sound can indicate the disorder.
- Painful chewing or biting: there can be pain experienced when chewing or biting due to the stiff jaw as there is a limited range of motion.
- Neck pain: the disorder can cause shoulder, finger, or neck pain.
- Tension headaches: tension headaches can be a sign of bruxism or TMJ. Dentists recommend wearing a night guard to prevent pressure on the jaw and teeth when sleeping.
- Ear pain: you might experience dull or sharp pain, which may get worse as you move around or when you chew or bite down on something.
If TMJ disorder causes your jaw to lock, where it remains closed or open, you should seek medical attention as soon as possible.
How Does Invisalign Treat TMJ Disorder?
Misaligned teeth can lead to TMJ disorder. When teeth are out of line, the jaw may be forced to shift to allow for better chewing and biting. This movement may apply unwanted pressure on your temporomandibular joint leading to discomfort and pain.
Fortunately, Invisalign aligners can be used to alleviate TMJ disorder symptoms. Dentists utilize clear aligners to fix the teeth misalignment and lessen the pressure on the temporomandibular joint. By fixing the misaligned teeth, the jaw shifts to its normal position, functioning smoothly, reducing the pain and discomfort on the TMJ.
Furthermore, Invisalign aligners are constructed of smooth plastic that is gentle on your teeth and gums. Therefore, if you opt for Invisalign braces, you’re assured of comfort and don’t need to worry about irritation: which is common with traditional braces. This irritation can worsen the symptoms of TMJ.
What Are the Benefits of Opting for Invisalign Treatment for TMJ Disorder
Here are some of the benefits of using Invisalign for TMJ:
- Invisalign can alleviate the pain and discomfort caused by the stress on TMJ. Moving the teeth to their correct position reduces the pressure on the joint.
- Invisalign is removable, making it easier to maintain proper oral hygiene. You can remove the aligners, eat, clean them, and put them back, preventing the build-up of bacteria in your mouth.
- They are comfortable, and this minimizes irritation and soreness in the mouth.
TMJ disorder can significantly affect your life. Therefore, if you notice any of the listed symptoms, visit Town Dental – Chaska, and our dental professional will examine your jaw and recommend the most suitable treatment.